Anyone got experience with 'oiled yarn'?

Lurking in my small but growing stash is some aran 'oiled yarn' called Troon Tweed from Texere Yarns in the north of England.

I haven't found much about oiled wool on the Internet, or in my reading, but I've assumed that this yarn is desirable for it's water-repellent quality. Do any of you have experience that you could share?

The yarn store's description suggests knitting a swatch, measuring it, washing it and measuring it again once dry. Alternatively it suggests washing the yarn before knitting up. I'd be quite happy to do that, as I have a niddy-noddy to wind the balls into hanks and a ball-winder to get it back into shape once it's dry, but how sure could I be that my swatch would be accurate?

Has anyone knitted with this sort of yarn before, and if leaving it unwashed before knitting, does is leave one's hands feeling grubby?


Oiled wool is usually 5 ply for knitting ganseys. Take a look at this site: and see what she recommends about washing. Click on the button 'get knitting'. I knitted quite a large swatch of this many years ago in 5 ply before I abandoned the idea of knitting a gansey. My hands didn't feel grubby, but they did feel a bit different.

QueerJoe's picture

I also got a cone of oiled wool that I used to knit a cable cardigan. I didn't wash it until after I knitted it up and I wish I had. The yarn was hard on my hands and not very enjoyable to knit with. After I washed the sweater, the resulting fabric was soft and would have been much nicer to knit with.

Kerry's picture

I've used a Scottish wool/silk oiled yarn which I washed before using because it felt rough and uncomfortable. It became more lofty after washing, but as I rarely do swatches the sweater didn't fit me (of course!) but looked great on the very slim daughter of a friend.

I did knit a lace swatch in one of Colourmart UK oiled cashmere/silk yarns which bloomed and became lofty after washing and looked great.

Great colours in the Troon Tweed by the way.